Volunteers Expand City of Yakima Outreach

April is National Volunteer Month, and April 7th to the 13th is National Volunteer Week. Both serve as reminders of the many ways volunteers assist the City of Yakima in its outreach to serve residents.

“The City of Yakima appreciates the many volunteers who are giving back to the community,” said Mayor Kathy Coffey. “Their assistance makes it possible for the City to expand services and opportunities for residents.”

An example is at the City of Yakima’s Harman Center, where volunteers serve in the kitchen, teach classes, help with gardening and organize a library. Volunteers play such an important role that the Center offers a “Volunteer of the Month” honor.

The Harman Center had an average of 77 volunteers per month last year. During 2018, volunteers worked a total of 15,294 hours at the Harman Center.

“They are a fabulous help to the Center and we appreciate every single one of them,” said Recreation Program Supervisor Leslie Richards. “If anyone wants to volunteer at the Harman Center they just need to give me a call (576-6402) or come by the Center.”

Volunteers are also making an impact with the City’s Office of Neighborhood Development Services (ONDS).

“ONDS uses volunteers to provide free snow removal, lawn and debris services, alley and vacant lot clean up, graffiti removal, and assembly of wheel chair ramps,” said ONDS Manager Archie Matthews. “In 2018 we logged 5,552 volunteer hours.”

Call 575-6101 for information on volunteering with the City’s Office of Neighborhood Development Services.

Yet another example is the community cleanup this Saturday, April 13th. Volunteers from local churches and Safe Yakima will offer curbside pick-up in the designated cleanup area from 8:00 am to 11:30 am on April 13th. Items not at the curb or alley by 8:00 am will not be picked up.

The cleanup event is available for households located from South 1st Street to Interstate 82 between East Chestnut Avenue and Pacific Avenue are eligible to participate in the free cleanup. Residents in those areas can also bring their items to a temporary disposal site at the Yakima Speedway parking lot, 1600 Pacific Avenue, from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm on April 13th.

Call the City of Yakima Refuse Division at 576-6739 for more information about the April 13th community cleanup event. To organize a neighborhood cleanup team, call 248-2291, extension 102, or e-mail outreach@together.church.

The event is being sponsored by the City of Yakima Solid Waste Division, Yakima Waste Systems, and Yakima County.